• Shalini Devi


I sit here writing this to you, with one eye open and the other eye closed, due to some crazy viral infection that keeps swelling up my right eye for weeks in a row. I share this because maybe everything I'm about to write can be summed up in this one action. Me. One eye open, one eye closed - pain, discomfort and the hilarity of it all and yet here I am writing anyway. Here I am, as I keep on going anyway. I could pack up now and say I said all there is to say but I guess my heart isn't quite finished yet. At least I tried anyway.

I've had quite the summer. I wanted to find an adjective for summer that would have aptly described it but once again words have failed me - yet again - in the seemingly impossibility of describing this summer. I will go on and try anyway. Again, reference paragraph one of this writing, I know I was right all along it just seems to come back to that anyway. Well regardless, I shall go on.

This summer. Was a summer of almosts. One I will look back on one day and hopefully be able to say with a laugh, hey remember the time I almost got married? Or when I almost did my Masters of Teaching at UofT? And it was not for want of trying believe me.

The day I was fully prepared with the last of my bridal outfit purchased – the bangles it was – was followed by the day it all fell apart, two weeks before the planned wedding date.

Oh yeah and the time I almost moved to Mississauga, I should add. In the almost perfect home I bought, and left, in quite the hurry at that. Then there as a summer of grief, loss, and trying to comprehend it all – climaxed by the hope that my illness would suddenly disappear and everything. In my life didn’t have to be so tragic and I could go to school and do my Masters and just continue on with my life as normal. However, it appears, life had other plans for me.

Said illness, I refused to call it CFS anymore, I’m going to. Use the scientific name from now on, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), did yet appear on Day 2 where I found myself unable to function after a class in the morning and back to that very familiar, yet devastating feeling of a crash where my body gives out on me, and it takes a very long time to heal and come back up again, after over-exerting my energy in some way – whether physically, mentally, emotionally, etc. – in this case I feel it was all 3 (for greater understanding on this largely misunderstood illness, check out the documentary Unrest on Netflix). But I always said, I would not know unless I try, and so I tried, and my body gave the verdict.

No, the Masters at UofT was not for me.

So. Here I am now, wondering, what. I learned from all this. Because as my Dad put it once – Surely, God. Did not put me in this Earth to suffer. And yes, suffering there has been for us all, although I have come such a far way, 5.5 years of ME cannot be ignored, on top of the almost-marriage, almost-home and almost-second degree, among other things. Lol this is just terrible but I will try to go on. No, God could not have done that to me. So, what then, have I learned from all this?

I learned that there is no such thing as a plan. Lol. I was always someone who needed to have a plan. Even when my life was falling apart around me, I was always moving to Plan B or Plan C. I have learned it doesn’t matter how much you plan, or prepare, or think you know what’s best for you – you really don’t.

I’m sorry – many of you are going to hate this entry, forgive me but I can’t deny my own truth so I share it anyway in hopes it’ll help someone, even if it’s just me, because this is a truth none of us like to admit, none of us like to see, not even in the lives of others, because frankly it terrifies us.

What terrifies us most, I feel, is feeling we are not in control of our own lives. That we don’t have the final say. That there is this great unknown called Life and we are afraid without our so-called plans it’ll eat us whole and spit us back out.

I’m here to say, even with the best plan, the best of intentions, and the strongest of motivations – Life can still eat you up and spit you back out. But do not despair, it doesn’t end here.

Because it has also taught me this – Life has a plan for us. Not the other way around.

And if we can learn to surrender to that Divine plan that is made by the maker of the perfecting operating, naturally wondrous universe that we find ourselves in, maybe we can see that can’t be so bad. Because if the one who created the stars, the tides, the flowers and the nature of all our lives is in charge, then how bad can it be? Surely the Creator, the Master Designer, The Great Architect must have a better plan than my tiny ego and my tiny mind makes up to shy away from the unknown, out of fear of not being in control.

And if I can surrender to this great plan for my life. If I can just fall back, and let the Universe catch me. Let it carry me. Surrender to each moment and continue to follow the guidance I find there – surely, it all works out in the end. Much like everything around us.

Surely these cycles of birth and death, pain and pleasure, love and loss balance out over time as we continue to grow and learn and become all we are as a result. Surely, I will continue to bloom even without a plan of my own, if I simply allow myself to naturally. By simply accepting the plan life has for me, and in taking it each moment at a time.

This is what I have learned. There are no plans we have for our life, only the plan life has for us.

That Divinely guided, preordained plan our souls signed up for before we were born – so we could learn and grow and be all we can be. So we could realize ourselves as that Grand Architect we truly are deep inside, not from our ego selves or our minds, but from our hearts, where the true Master within lies. Creating this all for our highest good and the highest good of all those around us.

And that it is ok to surrender. It is ok to not know. It is ok to let life guide you, instead of the other way around.

It’s ok to trust in ourselves, to trust in each other, to trust in life even if we can’t see why things happen the way they do. Or what is next for us around the bend. Maybe it’s ok to not know.

Maybe it’s just ok to not know at all – and let life surprise you.

Someone I have great respect for once told me not to forget, God knows what’s best for us, even if it involves suffering a bit – then that’s ok. Then that’s what it is for now. I’m learning this. How to trust. How to let go of the need to control. The need to know. The need to understand. And just trust.

God has a plan for my life. And the best is yet to come.

With my love always,


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